In recent weeks it has been good to see the very hard working apprentices Indie and Ellis back in the Garden. Their return has been possible with your wonderful support of the appeal to raise funds for the Friends’ Apprentice Fund which suffered a significant reduction in income when Coronavirus impacted on the Garden finances in the 2020 season.
The Secretary, Jennifer Parker, has provided the following update on the current position regarding the postponed 2020 AGM.
The postponement of our AGM planned for 15 April was one of the first decisions made by the Committee at the end of March when we had little idea of what was to come. We were hoping that the effect of Covid 19 would pass quickly and normality return. As the summer has gone along we have all had to adjust our lives, be grateful for the good things and learn to be patient.
An AGM meeting is not possible at the moment and may not be until next year. We feel a Zoom meeting is not ideal for our membership but to postpone the AGM into next year means we will be due two AGMs very close together.
We have followed the Charities Commission Guidelines and submitted our accounts and reports as required for the year to Sept 19. We will also publish them on our website. Following our call in Ventnorensis for any resolutions for the AGM nothing has been raised.
No Trustees are due for re-election this year. Jane Clarke resigned from the Committee and Peter Coleman was elected to her role as Deputy Chairman. The current Committee is seeking re-election, which includes Val Pitts who was co-opted on to the Committee to take over as Membership Secretary when Caroline Peel took up her role of High Sheriff. Caroline remains an active member of the Committee.
There are no major changes for which we would require a membership vote.
It is proposed that the term of the current Committee be extended until an Annual General Meeting of the Society can be held, if the law permits, in April 2021 (date to be confirmed in due course).
The autumn/winter edition is being printed and will be delivered to members next week.
This edition will feature an article by David Pearce, a former VBG apprentice gardener, on his studies for a Wisley Diploma. You can download and read his story here.
The Isle of Wight Volunteer Fair will be an on-line event this year and the Friends will be taking part with a video made by one of our very keen volunteers. You can watch our video here.
The Fair goes live on 24 October 2020 and here is a link to the Fair website.
Brian Kidd, President of our Society died peacefully last week, aged 82.
Brian has been President since 2005. He has been a much-loved, top supporter of the Friends in many ways over the years, he advertised the Garden during his regular broadcasts on Radio Solent, in his popular column in ‘The News’ and talks to gardening and other groups all over the area.
He had been Head of Parks and Gardens for Portsmouth and a fine inspiration for his Son, Chris Kidd during his horticultural career. He never failed to come over for the AGM and made sure that we appreciated the support that we all give the Garden, encouraging us to invent our own fund-raising projects.
The News – Portsmouth’s local paper in which he wrote a column for many years published a full tribute to him which you can find at: –
There was also a tribute on BBC News which you can find at: –
Radio Solent also paid tribute in the gardening programme The Kitchen Garden with Rebecca Parker, the programme is currently available on the BBC Sounds app at: –